Tag Archives: crop top

Project Notes: Shell Stitch Cropped Top With Embroidered Details

I started making this top MONTHS ago. I don’t usually have a project that I’ll work on in little bits here and there, either between more prominent projects or when I need a break from those projects, but that’s what this top started out as. In the last few months, I started to get more excited about this top for a few reasons – I was really excited about the simple shape, and I had decided to add embroidered details – and I worked fervently to finish it.

The top is worked in two pieces, front and back. Most of the embroidery was done before the front and back were seamed together. Shoulders and sides were then seamed, right sides facing, in single crochet. Once seamed, I turned the top right side out and added some simple single crochet stitching to the armholes, neckline, and bottom hem to finish and round out the edges.

Working in small amounts on the front piece over several months meant that I didn’t see the piece work up as fast as usual, so the front wound up being much too wide. Instead of frogging and redoing the whole thing, I simply made note of the adjusted measurements on my pattern draft to correct it for future makes, and made the back piece much smaller to account for the front piece being too big. This meant the seam would be further back on each side instead of directly under the arms, but given the color, texture, and simple design of the top, I wasn’t too worried about this.

I have been experimenting with different types of embroidery on different crochet stitches lately, and at some point, decided I wanted to add a little embroidery to this top. You can see that the stems and shoots are made with simple long stitches, as that worked best over the shell stitching. Crochet always has at least a little stretch, and this garment has a good bit because of not only the shell stitches, but the yarn itself, which is an acrylic/nylon blend. I tried to stay aware of this while embroidering and kept a looser tension for the stems and shoots than I would have if working into regular fabric. The leaves are single chain stitches with a bit of fill, and the small buds are French knots. All was done using DMC cotton embroidery thread.

The majority of the embroidery was done before the front and back were joined together, since it was easier to weave the back ends in as I went. After trying on the top once it was seamed together, I went and filled out the embroidery where I felt the top needed it. Although I’m still not 100% about it and feel like maybe I could have done better/added a bit more. Though now I know how the top looks when worn, I could maybe figure out better placing and amount of the embroidery if I do something similar in the future.

I love how these green and blue shades pop a bit from, yet compliment the grey.

In the above picture, you can see how the side seam is further back than normal. Also, this is a bit nitpicky, but as the designer critiquing a first draft, I’d rather the back neckline for this piece be a bit higher and flatter than this. But again, it’s not a big deal, and looks okay.

I finished this piece just as the weather was warming up around here, and the material is just too hot to wear right now, but I’m excited to wear it next fall/winter.

For some behind-the-scenes and in-progress shots, go peruse my instagram: @waterswares

Waters Wears: Reconstructed Men’s Tee

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Here’s the men’s t-shirt that I mentioned altering in my last post. It’s a men’s size medium, and I cut off about 9 inches from the bottom, with the shape curving down on the sides, which is called a “sharkbite” hem, I believe, and rolled up the sleeves and tacked them in place with a bit of hidden sewing. Pretty simple, and although I like the over all look, I wish I’d left the shirt just an inch or so longer. It’s meant to be a crop top but my belly just showed off a little too much for my liking when it was worn with these shorts (which I didn’t have before I cut the shirt), and adding an inch of length wouldn’t bother me any. I think this crop top would look great over high-waisted skirts or just thrown over a dress as well. Since it’s a men’s shirt, the shoulders look a little broad in comparison with the new bottom hem to me, but I think it looks alright when on.

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Though they didn’t look it in real life, these shorts looked much shorter to me in this set of pictures. This made me a bit uncomfortable, and I like my shorts longer, anyway, so I checked the cuffed hem to see if they could be unfolded, and they could a little bit! I used a seam ripper to break where the cuffs were sewn in place and unfolded them, which gave me around almost an inch more of added length. I have another pair seen here that look about the same length as these did to me, and they don’t look as revealing, so I’m not sure what made the difference. My only guess is material. These high-waisted shorts are made of a more stretchy material, while the other shorts are closer to traditional denim.

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I wore this outfit out to eat with Tanner and a couple of his friends. My throat is still recovering from being sick, but I was able to eat pizza, real, solid food for the first time in about four days! That was nice, and I didn’t realize how hungry I was until I started eating, haha. I can usually make it through two, maybe three pieces of a small pizza on my own but I probably could have eaten this whole pizza if I hadn’t stopped myself.

Anyway, my only issue with this outfit after lengthening the shorts is that the shorts aren’t quite as high-waisted as I’d like in order to wear them with this crop top without showing off more of my belly than I want every time I barely move my arms. But now I know, at least! :)

Hope you guys are having a good week!

Shorts: Rue 21
Shirt: Fruit Of The Loom men’s four pack, altered
Shoes: Faded Glory
Necklace: vintage Avon; it was my grandmother’s

How To Dress Comfortably While Still Looking Presentable

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I’ve mentioned before how I’ve been on a comfy clothes kick lately. But because I spend most of my days in pajamas since I work at home, when I’m out and about I like to dress up a little bit. I decided it would be fun play around with what I have in my wardrobe and share some outfits I consider comfy but still “presentable”. :) These can be worn to hang out with friends, run errands, or to more dressy events. Maybe you’ll find some inspiration here!

1. Comfy Tanktop, Comfy Shorts
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I’ve worn this basic outfit before here, although this time I’ve paired it with some comfy sandals instead of my Converse. This tanktop , while a little fitted, is just loose enough and made of a very soft material. Workout shorts are always comfortable. Rolling them up is a favorite way of mine to wear them, especially as just part of an outfit and not to the gym. I’m not sure why; I guess I just like the way that looks at the moment, but it’s also nice for hotter summer weather. I’ve worn this outfit before to my brothers-in-law’s football game, and something to cover up with was nice to have as the night got cold. A thick cardigan is a good choice, and I like the pop of this purple against the bright yellow stripes.

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Another cover-up option is a lightweight button up.

Tanktop: Love To Love, Shorts: Danskin Now, Sandals: Faded Glory (old), Purple Cardigan: Casual Corner Annex (old), Button-Up: Old Navy (old)

2. Stylish Jeggings
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I’ve mentioned before that I feel jeggings have come a LONG way. These from Faded Glory or any from American Eagle are a great sneaky, sneaky way to be comfortable while not wearing sweats or pajama pants. The first tee is in a soft, stretchy material and the second is one of my favorites because it has a wide neck (I hate most t-shirt necks because I can’t stand things that tight around my neck. No turtlenecks for me. :P) I wore basically this outfit a lot in the fall or on warmer winter days, and loved pairing the t-shirt and jeggings with these grey flats. I just think they make a basic casual outfit a little more chic or maybe feminine, while still being comfortable. I like how they look with these more deck-style flats, too, this particular pair has nice padding in the insole, and I think the pop of colors looks great with the light blue jeggings.

Though my hair is still pretty short, I’ve been growing out the top and my bangs, so some days I like to find ways to pin or pull them back out of may face that aren’t too finicky. They’re finally getting long enough to play around with, and one of my go-to ways is with either a twisted or braided across the front and bobby pinned on the side.

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I have accumulated quite a few sweaters over the years, many oversized and super comfortable. Often I’d throw one of these over this outfit in the fall. This one is a particular favorite. I love the color, the knit pattern, and the way it looks over a t-shirt and skinny jeans.

Both Jeggings: Faded Glory, Blue T-Shirt: Sonoma, Grey T-shirt: Danskin Now, Pullover: Boston Traders, Grey Flats: Faded Glory, Floral Deck Flats: Call It Spring (old) Bobby Pins: probably Goody’s

3. Jersey Knit Dress
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If you have to be a little bit more dressy (or just feel like wearing a dress) one made of t-shirt-like material is always a good option when comfort is the goal. A nice, lighweight cardigan is good for chillier days.

Another way I can keep my bangs back now that they’re a bit longer is by wearing a headband with stretch and wrapping/twisting the bangs around it to hold them in place. This is a simple single strand headband with a flower that I crocheted. You can see it worn here and here, also.

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This dress from Joe Boxer is very comfortable and the bright-colored stripes and tanktop-style bodice make it a nice style for the summer months. You can make it more casual with some sneakers, or dress it up with some nice, comfy flats.

Pink Dress: Rosebud, Grey Tanktop: No Boundaries, Cardigan: Worthington (Old), Floral Deck Flats: Call It Spring, Striped Dress: Joe Boxer (similar here), Grey Flats: Faded Glory, Shoes: Converse, Headband: made by me

4. Long Skirt, Big T-Shirt
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Long skirts have always seemed a comfortable option to me, they offer more coverage, go with lots of things, and can be worn in warm or cold months. I’m wearing this one with an oversized tee that’s nice and soft. I’m big on oversized tees right now, and I’ve also been into tucking tops into skirts lately. Paired with these comfy Dr. Scholl’s wedges, wearing this outfit feels casual while giving off a more dressy, almost 70s vibe.

T-Shirt: Arizona Jean Company (pretty sure it’s a men’s XL), Skirt: Marc Anthony (old), Wedges: Dr. Scholl’s

5. Jersey Skirt
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A jersey skirt, or one in any soft material, with a wide, stretchy waistband is great when seeking comfort, and I like that this one can be worn high-waisted or lower on the hips. Yes, it is a bubble skirt, and that may be not trendy anymore, but I for one never had one when they were popular a few years ago yet always wanted one, so I’m pretty happy to wear it (and I think it looks fine, anyway.) Skirts like this are nice with tanktops, especially more strappy ones for dressier nights. This tanktop is one with a built-in bra, so if you’re bold enough to wear just it, there’s the added comfort of less layers right there. However, this particular built-in bra is really only another layer of thin material with soft elastic underneath, so if you feel there’s not quite enough coverage (like me) you can throw a super soft crop top over it. Your crop top can be much less wrinkly, though, of course. :)

Skirt: Joe Benbasset (old), Tanktop: No Boundaries, Crop Top: One Clothing (old), Flats: Faded Glory

6. Overalls
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And finally, when nothing else works, just throw on some overalls! They’re wonderfully comfortable and can be styled in so many ways.

My bangs are finally long enough to simply push back with a headband without having them stick up everywhere, so that’s what I did here. I think pairing the overalls with this chunky bow headband and these flats gives the outfit a bit of a retro look.

Overalls: L.E.I., Crop Top: One Clothing, Flats: Faded Glory, Headband: made by me (also worn here)

Those are just a few ideas and staple outfits I wear when I want to be comfy. Hope you enjoyed!

God bless and have a great day!

Let’s Talk About: A Sorbet Summer Crop Top

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I love this color combination! The particular shades remind me of sorbet. The yarn is Caron Simply Soft in the colors Sunshine, Plum Wine, and Persimmon. Although it’s still not even quite spring here, I’m getting tired of wintry weather, and am anticipating the warmer days ahead.

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I had been wanting to make a crop top of this shape for some time now. This piece is made in one of my favorite stitches for this type of yarn, a simple triple crochet done with an N-9.00mm hook so that the stitch is very loose. It was worked in a front and back panel, with sleeves added on later. Though I wanted the neckline to be wide, I misjudged the size and made it too big, so I had to add some rows around it after piecing the front and back together to make it smaller. Although I think this is a fine solution for many pieces, I feel like it shows too much on this top since the stitches are so big. Of course, this was just the first attempt, and these issues can be remedied. When I make another, I’d like to get the neck size correct and be able to have the original look I wanted, with only the front and back panels and a simple border stitch to tidy up the neckline.

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One thing I really like about this top is the high-low, split-side bottom hem. I’ve been wanting to try this style of hem since seeing this knit dress. Although I don’t knit, I love the shape of this dress and how simple the pattern is. If you knit, you should give it a try. I really like the way this hem turned out and I definitely want to use it again on other tops.

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I don’t know if I will wear this top or try to make another and improve upon it using what I’ve learned from the mistakes in this one, just because I know it could be done better. But either way, I’m very glad it turned out as well as it did and the color combination makes me so happy!

Crochet Crop Top: made by me

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